Sean's Bar, Athlone
Sean’s Bar is not just the oldest pub in Ireland (unless you ask the lads in the next entry), but recorded in the Guinness Book of Records as the oldest pub in all of Europe (it may very well be the oldest pub in the world, in fact). Located in Shannon-side Athlone, it’s a simple and rugged place with little glam to it, but a fantastic and vibrant beer garden and an enthusiastic clientele. Astonishingly, the bar predates the 12th-century Norman Castle that sits almost next door by more than 200 years, with its stone-clad walls able to remember Ireland before the country could even be considered such a thing (it was a collection of kingdoms). The Guinness is excellent, and you could spend an hour just reading the walls. Oh, that opening date? Roughly the year 900.